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NIOSH alert: protecting poultry workers from avian influenza (bird flu) (Superseded by 2008-128).

Kullman-G; Delaney-LJ; Decker-J; MacMahon-K
NIOSH 2008 Feb; :1-21
The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) requests help in protecting poultry workers from infection with viruses that cause avian influenza (also known as bird flu). Although human infection with avian influenza viruses is rare, workers infected with certain types of these viruses may become ill or die. Some types of avian influenza viruses can cause serious illness or death in poultry and other birds. These viruses are referred to as highly pathogenic viruses. Rarely, these viruses may be passed to humans who contact infected poultry or virus-contaminated materials or environments. The following workers are at risk of infection with highly pathogenic avian influenza viruses: Poultry growers and their workers; Service technicians of poultry growers; Workers at egg production facilities (caretakers, layer barn workers, and chick movers); Veterinarians and their staff who work with poultry; Disease control and eradication workers on poultry farms (State, Federal, contract, and poultry farm workers). This Alert describes the following: Avian influenza in humans; Avian influenza outbreaks in chickens; Recommendations for protecting poultry workers from avian influenza. Remember these facts: No avian influenza epidemic now exists in humans; Scientists are currently most concerned about the highly pathogenic avian influenza A virus known as H5N1. As of February 2008, all human cases of influenza caused by this virus have occurred outside the United States; The avian influenza virus rarely infects humans. The avian influenza virus does not pass easily from person to person. NIOSH requests that owners and operators of poultry operations follow the recommendations in this Alert and use the controls presented here. NIOSH also requests that safety and health officials, editors of trade journals, labor unions, and employers bring the recommendations in this Alert to the attention of all poultry workers and poultry farm operators.
Poultry-industry; Poultry-workers; Poultry; Pulmonary-system-disorders; Respiratory-system-disorders; Zoonoses; Infection-control; Infectious-diseases; Viral-diseases; Viral-infections; Agricultural-workers; Agricultural-industry; Veterinarians; Veterinary-medicine
David Weissman, M.D., Director, Division of Respiratory Disease Studies, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, 1095 Willowdale Road, Morgantown, WV 26505-2888
Publication Date
Document Type
Numbered Publication; Alert
Fiscal Year
NTIS Accession No.
NTIS Price
Identifying No.
(NIOSH) 2008-113
NIOSH Division
Source Name
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health